Assam Fish Head

The assam curry uses  spices but made lighter and sourish with the addition of tamarind paste and pineapple. Fresh herbs like laksa leaves and torch ginger flower  heightens the flavours. The curry is light, spicy sour that goes well with a hot bowl of steaming rice. A little tip, you can make extra portion of the sambal and freeze. It keeps well in the freezer for 3 months. This reduces the prepping time for the next Assam Fish Head meal.

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Adjust Servings
½large fish head (garoupa, threadfin or snapper)
¼tsp salt
tsp pepper
100g pineapple (sliced)
600ml water
70g assam paste
6ladies fingers (stalks trimmed)
1tomato (cut into wedges)
5sprigs laksa leaves
½bulb torch ginger flower (sliced finely)
½cube ikan bilis stock
2tsp sugar
Salt to taste
1tbsp oil
6fresh red chillies
4dried red chillies (soaked)
2 lemongrass
15g galangal
20g turmeric
80g shallots
4cloves garlic
1tbsp fish curry powder
1tsp toasted belacan
¼cup oil



Add all ingredients for the rempah to a food processor and blend into a smooth paste
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Mix 600ml water with 70g of assam paste. Strain and discard the seeds
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Heat 1 tbsp oil. Fry rempah until the oil separates from the paste
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Add in the pineapple slices, assam mixture and ½ cube ikan bilis stock
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Simmer for 10 minutes
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Clean fish head and pat dry
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Rub ¼ tsp salt and ⅛ tsp pepper
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Steam fish head for 10 minutes
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Add in tomatoes, laksa leaves and sliced torch ginger flower. Continue to simmer for 5 minutes
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Tumble in the lady fingers. Remove the laksa leaves
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Give a quick stir
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Once fish is steamed, discard excess steaming liquid from the plate
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Add assam gravy over the fish head
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Cover and steam fish head for another 10 minutes or until the eyes pop out. Serve immediately
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